Written for FandaticForeverAndAlways' The Opposite Side of Every Character Challenge (character: Dobby)
Dobby, the Bad House-Elf
"We must stop it. The Hogwarts students will be in danger. We can't let this go on!"
Dobby couldn't help but overhear his master and mistress as they engaged in hissed whispers over breakfast. He, who was supposed to be taking his well-earned day off, had stumbled into the dining hall just as Master Lucius was discussing Hogwarts.
The students will be in danger? From what?
With his back against the wall, keeping himself out of sight, Dobby listened further.
"What do you suppose we do, Lucius?" Mistress Narcissa asked in a gentle tone. "How do we prevent this from happening?"
Dobby pressed his ear against the wall, trying to catch every word of their hushed tones.
"I have… something," Lucius said. "Something that may stop it."
Dobby heard Lucius slide something across the table to his wife, but he couldn't dare be seen. The Malfoys didn't know that Dobby had heard of the greatness of Harry Potter, that he respected him more than he respected his own masters. They couldn't know. They would hand him over to Lord Voldemort.
"You think this will work?" Narcissa questioned.
"It's the only option," Lucius answered. "There will be plenty of people in Diagon Alley next week. We'll take it then and slip into someone's bag. They'll never know."
Dobby could almost hear Narcissa nodding in agreement. "I hope you're right, Lucius," she said. "I hope you're right."
"Harry Potter!" Dobby almost squeaked in delight as the young boy he had heard so much about opened the door to his bedroom. He appeared startled, at first, then angry. "Harry Potter, sir, it is the greatest pleasure to meet you." He held out his hand for Harry to take, but he only stared more.
"Who are you?" Harry wanted to know, looking at him suspiciously.
"Dobby, sir!" Dobby answered.
Not appearing at all pleased to see the house-elf standing on his bed, Harry took up a chair opposite him. "And you're here because?" The Durselys were doing a charity deal just down the stairs, and the last thing he wanted was to be involved in such work. They'd asked him to stay, to help them donate the large cheque they wanted, but Harry had told them quite simply that he would rather stick pins in his eyes. They always wanted him to be involved, and it irked him to no end.
"Dobby has come to warn you, sir!" Dobby squeaked, hopping off the bed. "Terrible things are going to happen at Hogwarts!"
This piqued Harry's attention. "Terrible things?" he asked.
Dobby squeaked again. "Well, no sir," he said. "Not terrible in the way you might think. Dobby's masters, sir, they're going to stop… to stop something."
"Stop what?" Harry demanded, sitting up just that little bit straighter
Dobby looked up at the great Harry Potter with large tennis ball eyes. "To stop people dying, sir," he answered softly.
Harry was on his feet. "How?" he asked.
"Dobby doesn't know, sir. Dobby only heard. They would hand Dobby over to the Lord Voldemort if they knew Dobby was here, sir."
"Harry Potter must go back to Hogwarts," Dobby continued. "He must stop these terrible things from happening!"
"I can't," Harry answered. "There's no way they'll let me back, even if I wanted to."
"Dobby will help, sir! Dobby will help Harry Potter to get back to school. Harry Potter must trust Dobby."
Harry seemed to consider this, seemed to debate whether or not Dobby's help was worth his time and effort. Hogwarts had not been for Harry, and the last thing he wanted was to go back to that place when the Durselys treated him like a king here.
But the idea that someone was trying to stop student deaths at Hogwarts was… "Alright," he said. "Alright, tell me what I need to do."
All was quiet for many months. Dobby went about his normal business in the Malfoy home, making sure to clean, tidy, and do as the Malfoys requested.
Dobby wasn't supposed to receive payment for his efforts – in fact, he detested that gold – but the Malfoys insisted. What they didn't know was that every time they gave him the gold for his work, Dobby would send it away. No one knew, but every Galleon Dobby received, Dobby would slip it into Harry Potter's vault at Gringotts.
He needed it more than Dobby did.
It wasn't until Dobby was sweeping the floors of the kitchen did he hear anything that was happening. Master Lucius came storming through the door, calling for his wife. He paid little attention to Dobby, which suited him just fine. Setting the broom aside, he crept past the long dining table and pressed his large ear against the wall of the sitting room.
"Narcissa, dear," Lucius said. "That Weasley girl found the diary I slipped into her bag at Diagon Alley, and it appears to be working. Two deaths, so far, have been prevented at Hogwarts. Everyone, of course, thinks it's Harry Potter trying to stop them, but they know nothing."
For a moment there was silence, and Dobby was worried Lucius had cast a muffling charm over the room. But then the calm voice of his wife sounded.
"You never did tell me exactly what that diary is used for," she said. "How it works."
There was more silence, and then, "To be honest, I'm not sure myself. It was discovered in Lord Voldemort's possessions after he killed James and Lily Potter. From what was gathered, he left part of his soul inside it, there to possess any Dark witch or wizard who began writing in it. It's proving good use, though. That Weasley girl has already unknowingly saved the lives of many."
Narcissa gave a soft, relieved laugh. "Oh, that's wonderful news!" she said. "Terrific."
Dobby swallowed. He must find Harry Potter.
A strangled cry and then a thump was all that was heard when Dobby appeared in the hospital wing that night. He had watched from the shadows as he had tried to stop that Bludger someone had set on the Gryffindor Seeker, trying to send Harry Potter home. It had landed him in hospital, but at least he was still at Hogwarts, and alive.
"Dobby!" Harry shouted. "What are you doing here?" He winced as he moved his arm in the wrong direction.
"Harry Potter is still at Hogwarts," Dobby confirmed.
"Yes, but I'm bloody lucky," Harry grumbled.
"If Dobby had not tried to stop that Bludger, Harry Potter might have died." He gave a frightened squeak as Harry Potter grabbed him around the neck.
"It was you?" he hissed.
Dobby nodded solemnly, and eventually, he was let go of. "Thank you."
"Dobby is happy to serve, sir," he said. "Terrible things are happening at Hogwarts. Harry Potter must find a way to stop them."
Harry scratched his arm absently, frowning. "You don't think I know that? I've been trying, but someone is always one step ahead of me."
Footsteps could now be heard walking towards the hospital wing, and Dobby knew he didn't have long. Leaning forward, he beckoned the boy closer. "It's a diary," he said.
"A diary, sir. A diary by You-Know-Who is the reason. Find the diary, sir. You must!" And then he clicked his fingers, and Disapparated, just as Professors Dumbledore and McGonagall entered, carrying a frightened, struggling first year student.
"He's taken her."
"What's that, dear?"
The Malfoys were having breakfast when an owl arrived from the Ministry of Magic, carrying a letter addressed to Lucius. He read over it, frowning.
"The Weasley girl, Narcissa. He's taken her, holding her captive. I daresay she's well aware of what's been happening now." He scanned the letter, and when his eyes reached the bottom, he jumped to his feet, cursing.
"What is it, Lucius?" Narcissa asked, and Dobby silently peeled the potatoes for dinner as he listened.
"That blasted Potter!" he roared. "He saved her! He's taken her back. This is a letter informing me Albus Dumbledore wishes to see me in his office right now. No doubt he's learned of my plan to remove him as headmaster, too. He's a danger to them, Narcissa. He and Potter… he'll get them all killed."
"You best go," Narcissa told him. "See what you can do."
Lucius nodded, then turned to Dobby, who had returned to his task with a hidden smile. "Dobby, you better come with me," he said. "I may require your assistance."
Being the 'loyal' house-elf that Dobby was, he obliged, but not before shuddering at the reward he might get afterwards.
Probably another sock, he thought bitterly.
Dobby couldn't help but smile at the uneasiness Master Lucius seemed to have when he stepped into Dumbledore's office. Almost every nook and cranny was covered in Dark artefacts, Dark spell books, and other objects that he knew set Lucius' teeth on edge.
Dumbledore sat at his desk, smiling humbly as Lucius entered, and beside him was the famous Harry Potter. Dobby felt his chest swell with pride. They had succeeded! There had been a death at Hogwarts.
"Ah, Mr Malfoy," Dumbledore said calmly. "It's a pleasure."
Lucius only gave a hmph as a reply. He eyed both he and Harry Potter with great distaste.
"You've come upon the Ministry's request?" Dumbledore continued.
"As it appears," Lucius answered coldly. "I see Potter made it out safely."
This seemed to be the cue that Dumbledore needed. He smiled, folding his hands over his desk. "Ah, yes," he said. "And, in the process, learnt of what lay within the chamber, too."
Dobby noticed his master shift uncomfortably. "And… what might that be?" he asked.
"Voldemort," Dumbledore said simply.
"Well, a remaining part of Voldemort.
Dobby sent a look in Harry Potter's direction, and they both shared a private smile. Lucius had been discovered. Not much got past Albus Dumbledore.
When they left, Lucius muttering something about being more careful next time, they were stopped by none other than Harry Potter just outside the office. He was holding a torn and tattered sock that looked largely out of shape. Dobby now knew the diary he had seen in Dumbledore's office belonged to his master, and highly suspected that was what Harry Potter had put inside it.
Harry gave the back of Lucius' head a very smug look. "Mr Malfoy," he said.
Lucius spun around, glaring at him. "Potter!" he spat.
Harry held out the sock, grinning. "I believe this belongs to you."
Lucius tensed. "I don't know what you're talking about," he replied indignantly.
Harry merely gazed at Lucius with distaste before continuing. "You slipped it into Ginny Weasley's cauldron that time in Diagon Alley," he said. "You hoped that by her finding it, she'd unknowingly prevent the disaster destined for Hogwarts."
Lucius said nothing, merely glared at Harry and then at the sock still in his hand. "You have no proof," he said, but Harry ignored him.
"I believe this is yours," and he forced it into Lucius Malfoy's hands, who dropped it into Dobby's as if it had suddenly caught fire.
Dobby let out a loud squeak, the diary falling to the fall. "Master, Dobby cannot take such things again," he said.
"What?" Lucius asked, for the first time sounding cruel.
"A sock," Dobby said. "Not again, sir." Big, round tennis ball eyes stared up at Lucius, who was gazing down at him with a confused expression. "Dobby does not like socks, sir. They embarrass Dobby."
"Embarrass you – what?"
"Dobby prefers to remain a slave," Harry Potter explained. "As all house-elves should."
Dobby nodded quickly. "Dobby does, sir."
Lucius simply stood there, speechless. His mouth opened and closed a number of times before he watched on in horror as his beloved house-elf – someone he had considered a friend – moved to stand beside Harry Potter.
"Dobby?" he whispered, shocked.
"Master Lucius said Dobby is free, sir," Dobby said. "Dobby has always been a paid, free elf with Master Lucius. Dobby is free to be loyal to who Dobby pleases, and Dobby has chosen Harry Potter, sir."
Lucius seemed lost for words. "Potter?" he finally managed.
Harry only smiled.
"Harry Potter doesn't offer gold to Dobby, or clothing, sir. Dobby likes that."
Lucius seemed shocked, and rather lost for words. His eyes drifted from Dobby, to Harry, and then to Dobby again. So intent, he was, in wondering what he had done wrong with Dobby, he didn't notice that Harry Potter had drawn his wand.
When he did, it was too late. Harry had already uttered those two words that would kill, and with Dobby's magic holding his master in place, the flash of green light went straight to his chest. After Dobby went to check on him, he knew that he wouldn't be getting another ounce of gold from Master Lucius ever again.
Harry looked pleased with himself.
"Finally, sir," Dobby said. "Dobby thought he would never shut up."
Harry laughed, and they were then joined by Professor Dumbledore, who merely instructed Dobby to dispose of the body somewhere where it wouldn't be found. Dobby obeyed, noticing the glint of darkness in the headmaster's eyes, making him one of the most powerful Darkest wizards to ever exist.
When he returned, Dobby saw that the school had mostly returned to normal. Students were back in class, fear for their lives leaked through the corridors, and Harry Potter had once again returned to his post as the most famous boy-wizard to ever exist.
After all, it wasn't everyday someone defeated Lord Voldemort – wizard protector – twice, and lived to tell the tale.
I /tried/ to make this as believable as possible, but evil!Dobby is just... unheard of. In saying that, I had actually quite a bit of fun flipping some of the characters around. The Dursleys donating to charity? The Malfoys trying to save the students at Hogwarts? And, considering I flipped Voldemort, I feel that as his name didn't have the fear of it, people were willing to use it.
Anyway, please let me know what you think. I look forward to your responses. Thank you!